Tuesday, 24 March 2009

running in another country

the beautiful country of Ireland. I accompanied Mark to Connemara for the weekend as he was running the ultra marathon and I was offered the chance of a weekend away involving a state of undress and lots of sweat.....

We flew to Dublin and hired a car and headed west. Unfortunately in the morning it was foggy so no scenery gawping but by the time we hit Galway the sun was shining. Due to the demand for accommodation we were staying in Clifden nearly an hour away from the hub of the race and staying above a sports shop..... what a find!!! Clifden is absolutely lovely and the B&B was fantastic. Gerry and Siobhan who owned the B&B and sports shop could not have been more lovely or helpful. We parked the car and headed to the nearest pub and sat outside in the sunshine drinking Guinness. A really nice way to spend the afternoon.

Mark was up early to get the bus to the start of the race and since he was running a few miles and therefore not around to play with for a while I decided to investigate a potential run for myself. An hour later following my sight seeing I went back to the B&B and put on the running gear. The scenery was beautiful and very pleasant but unfortunately the run was not so good. My right leg was very sore and I ended up running like an eejit with a dead leg. The passing cars must have thought i was a circus act who had escaped.

Following my disappointing run I got in the car to go and cheer on Mark at the finish. The finish was a great atmosphere with the announcer gentleman in top form. Mark and Michelle came in on 6hours 16 minutes which for a very tough 40 mile course was a great time.

On the night of the race we headed to the pub and met up with fellow WHWR family member Jeff. Lots of Guinness and good chat followed. Next day we drove back to Dublin airport and our lovely weekend came to an end.

I am heading to Belfast with work tomorrow so I am staying at Mark's so I can catch the red eye flight in the morning. So being by the beach I decided to head on out. Now the wind and rain was hitting off the window but I thought how bad can it be? well by the time i hit the beach I should have guessed by the fact no other runners were out. I could hardly run in a straight line and i suffered my first attack of ponytail whiplash. not only was i getting attacked by the bitter harsh rain but my hair was slapping me as hard as many a businessman has paid for in the red light district!!!! I only lasted 35 mins but there is only so much a princess can take....

Thursday, 19 March 2009

running in another city

well in a gym in another city. It would appear that I am bordering on what would seem to be a runner. I was away in Manchester with work overnight and I took my running gear and went to the nearby large chain gym that the hotel guests can use. Yes, I Geraldine, went to the gym in the spare time I had.

Plus despite a very long couple of days the first thing I did when I returned to the flat from the airport was putting on the washing machine so my running gear can be washed and ready for my run after work tomorrow night.

What is happening to me?

Monday, 16 March 2009

Woolie hats

so it would seem that the princess is out of fashion when it comes to running in Edinburgh. On Saturday and again after work today I went for a run on Queen's drive in Holyrood park and on both occasions I seemed to be the only runner not wearing a woolie hat!

No, I was the only one wearing shorts and a tee shirt. Everyone else was wearing leggings, at least two layers on top, gloves and of course a woolie hat.

It seems the ladies and gents of our fine capital only go out running in gear that anyone living in Alaska would be envious of. Of course there is also the technology behind the materials these runners are kitted out in. Two of the ladies out jogging that I passed had more scientifically advanced wicking, wind resistant and altitude adaptable outfits than the entire WHWR family members put together on race day!!!!

I am of course jealous to the core and I too wish I could purchase my running attire from Harvey Nic's but 2009 is the year of 'Money Better Spent.' So I will continue to run in my hardcore Glaswegian style of shorts and tee shirt!!

Talking of Money Better Spent I have just managed to secure accommodation for the Barrathon. Mark will be happy as it was getting to the stage of tent on the beach. Mark and I have agreed that when we go away for his races that he organises everything and vice versa. Well, considering that I turned up to the 5K with no race number, socks, trackie bottoms to keep warm in or any pre race nibbles I think Mark is more nervous about coming with me to Barrathon than I am about running it. Hey ho maybe all these miles I will rack up in training I will learn to focus the mind - then again.....

Monday, 9 March 2009

The next challenge.....

....is going to be the Troon 10k on 6th May. This means I have 8 weeks to prepare. I have not put on a pair of trainers since my last race (get me sounding like a runner!) due to working away with work last week and putting in silly hours.

Now, I could have gone when I returned from my travels but my boiler decided to go in a huff with me for being away and packed in. This meant I returned to a cold flat and unable to run a hot bath. Of course I responded to this problem in a very mature and independent womanly fashion - I called my better half Mark (Coach DQ) and blubbed. Mark immediately put on his shoes and drove to Edinburgh to rescue me despite it being late at night and work the next day. He truly is a star!!

However, his rescue came at a price....I was driving home from the Strathaven Striders dance on the Saturday night!! The more I think about the situation the more I think there was calculated sabotage on my boiler as Subversive runner was also attending the same dance (for those who are not aware of the Subversive runner please see his blog via the link as he is a follower to this blog and all round top bloke!)

It was a great night and good to catch up with the Lovely Lee (please see her blog via follower link)It was also good to be exposed to a running club night out. In my previous life as a non runner I had runners down as people who were obsessed with trainers, timing themselves and only ingesting healthy foods - how wrong was I!!! The dance was a BYOB and it really was a bottle each! I really am beginning to wonder why I have not put on the trainers before now as I seem to share quite a few of the characteristics......

So 8 weeks ...10k...

I need to get the trainers back on and up the mileage. I am thinking to try and work on speed during the week with a distance run at the weekend. I live a short distance from Holyrood park so I think I will need to join the many runners that use that part of Edinburgh. However, this does make me a little nervous as being a non runner who has driven through that park on many occasions I will probably be subject to comments such as:

  • what is she wearing - those shorts with those legs...
  • she is not going very fast
  • she has colour on her cheeks a clown would be jealous of...
  • has she never heard of public transport
  • why oh why in this weather

I have of course never thought such things or never nearly missed the exit on the roundabout admiring the running technique of a fit, toned handsome runner with tanned, muscly legs.....

Anyway I will hopefully be able to blog more often as I now have Internet access in the flat however that does mean I have blog access 24 hours and post drinkies.....


Tuesday, 3 March 2009

And now, the other Geraldine

As we have all seen, Geraldine is now a runner who is focussed on her training etc.

However, some of us have had the privilige of being with the other Geraldine.

My favourite video of her. Taken 11:30pm 31st December 2008. Beach at Stoneybridge, South Uist. Enjoy. Coach DQ.

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Princess crosses the finish line....

.......in 34 mins so I am a happy princess and DQ is a proud coach

I started in the middle of the pack but even a few hundred metres in people were walking so i moved my way forward. I kept the head down and just ran and before I knew it i had ran uphill, outside and in the drizzle and at the 2km point after 12 mins. Prior to the race I thought I was being ambitious at a 50 min finish so i thought i better slow the pace and keep energy in reserve. So I slowed the pace and i did walk for a few metres at the 3km point but that was more to stretch out my left leg which was feeling a little tight.

I made it over the finish line in 34 minutes which is a lot faster than I expected and i wonder if I didn't look at my watch after the 2km would i have been able to get an even faster time. I do now feel like a runner and not because i have a race tee shirt and medal but because afterwards i am calculating how to improve performance and plan my next race!!!

Thanks to Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland for organising the race and thanks to everyone for all the support I have had for my first steps into running

Please see the attached photo which shows me and race merchanise that I have actually earned by running and not just timing other people running

Morning of the Race

Well, the day has finally arrived! I am just getting ready for the race which starts in just over a couple of hours time. I came through from Edinburgh on Friday night with my trainers and a selection of running gear items but I had the feeling I had forgotten something which I realised later was my Race number. Phone call to the Race organisers eventually stopped the flurry of calls regarding the logistics of retrieving the number from my Capital abode.

Last night Race prep started with an ale in true RAW (Marty, DQ and Pirate Boy) style but being as this my first Race I didn't make my way on to the Vino Tinto Collapso.

Now, I have to admit, I am nervous. I could write something stronger than nervous but will stick with that. Coach DQ is not impressed with my thoughts regarding final Race preparations. Apparently, what should I wear, should I get fake tan for my legs or what should I do if I trip are really not the typical running concerns that I should be having at this late stage.

So, time for a shower, final decision on outfit and then we are off to sunny Maybole, I WISH. Forecast is for heavy showers throughout the morning, but I don't care as I have waterproof mascara. I will complete this race either by running, walking or crawling. Dario would be proud.

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